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Full text of "A history of Persia"

46                    HISTORY OF PKRSIA         n,AP. sliVII
It remains to add that, in consequence of this doctrine
of the Imams, the Shahs of Persia  have   no religious
authority in their kingdom, whereas the Sultan of Turkey
is the acknowledged Caliph among Sunnis.     Indeed, the
position of the Shahs since the downed! of the Safavi
dynasty is theoretically that of usurpers, although in prac-
tice they were absolute monarchs until the mystic word
"constitution " was heard in Persia.    It may further be
observed that Shias make pilgrimages  to  Kerhela,  the
scene of the martyrdom of Husayn, and u Krrhclai " is a
title which ranks only second to that of " Haji."    They
also visit the tomb of AH at Najaf,     In Persia the Sacred
City and the Glory of the Shia World is Meshed, where,
as described in Chapter JL, JRi/a, the Kighth  Imam, is
buried,., and "Meshedi" is the third and  last  title of
honour affected by Shia pilgrims.